Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Six Degrees of R.A. Dickey

Have you guys ever heard of the game "Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon"?  It's based on the theory that no two humans are separated from any other human by any more than six acquaintances or acquaintances of acquaintances (and so on), but replaces that first person with Kevin Bacon, and all other people with actors who have been in a disaster movie with him.

As it happens, the Blue Jays have AJ Burnett to thank for letting this trade happen.  Would you believe that this trade actually may not have gone down had AJ Burnett decided not to opt out of his contract so that he could sign with the New York Yankees?  I'm being super cereal here.

You see, Noah Syndergaard was drafted in 2010 with a pick that was obtained when the Jays failed to sign James Paxton, their sandwich round pick from 2009.  That sandwich pick was given to the Jays because Burnett was a Type-A free agent when he opted out of his deal with the Jays to sign with NY.  Awesome, huh?

And that's how you play Six Degrees of R.A. Dickey.  Now, I had done something like this before (here, here, and here), but holy shit this roster has changed, and I definitely didn't have a clever name attached to it at the time, so let's have a look at the new guys.

  • R.A Dickey: Acquired, along with Mike Nickeas and Josh Thole, in exchange for Travis d'Arnaud, John Buck, Noah Syndergaard, and Wuilmer Becerra.
    • d'Arnaud was acquired, along with Kyle Drabek and Michael Taylor (later flipped for Anthony Gose) for one Harry Leroy Halladay.  Drabek has been worth -0.4 WAR over 167 innings over parts of 3 seasons, and Gose was worth 0.4 WAR in his brief playing time this past season.
      • Halladay was drafted by the Blue Jays in the 1st round, 17th overall (1-17 herein) in 1995, and was worth 45.6 rWAR over parts of 15 seasons.
    • Buck was acquired as part of a giant clustercock of a trade that I'm going to mention later.
    • Syndergaard was drafted by the Jays in the sandwich round of the 2010 draft.  The Jays were given the draft pick as a result of failure to sign James Paxton in 2009.
      • Paxton was taken in the sandwich round of the 2009 draft as compensation for losing AJ Burnett, who opted out of his contract with the Jays, instead opting to sign with the Yankees for 5 years, $82.5MM.
        • Burnett was signed as a free agent by the Blue Jays before the 2006 season to a 5 year, $55MM deal.  Before opting out after the 2008 season, Burnett was worth 6.0 rWAR over 522 innings (11.8 fWAR sounds an awful lot better).
    • Becerra was signed as an international free agent in 2010.

  • Jose Reyes: Acquired, along with Mark Buehrle, Josh Johnson, Emilio Bonifacio and John Buck, in exchange for Henderson Alvarez, Yunel Escobar, Adeiny Hechavarria, Jake Marisnick, Anthony DeSclafini and Jeff Mathis.
    • Escobar was acquired, along with Jojo Reyes, from Atlanta for Alex Gonzalez, Tim Collins and Tyler Pastornicky.  Over parts of three season, Escobar was worth 7.8 WAR.
      • Gonzalez signed with the Jays before the 2010 season, and was worth 3.3 rWAR in 88 games before the Jays sold high on him.
      • Collins was signed by JP Ricciardi as an undrafted free agent, and has since become serviceable in the Royals' bullpen.
      • Pastornicky was drafted by the Jays in the 5th round of the 2008 draft.
    • Mathis was acquired for Brad Mills, in a trade that the Jays somehow won, despite Mathis being the worst hitter in the history of baseball.
      • Mills was drafted by the Jays in the 4th round of the 2007 draft.
    • Alvarez was signed as an international free agent in 2006.
    • Hechavarria was signed as an internation free agent in 2010.
    • Desclafini was taken by the Jays in the 6th round of the 2011 draft.
    • Marisnick was taken in the third round of the 2009 draft, also as compensation for the loss of AJ Burnett.  Thanks bud.

  • JA Happ: Acquired, along with Brandon Lyon and David Carpenter in exchange for Francisco Cordero, Asher Wojiecowski, Kevin Comer, Carlos Perez, Joe Musgrove, David Rollins and Ben Francisco.  He's been worth 0.2 rWAR over 40 innings for the Jays in half a season.  Lyon provided 25 innings of 0.5 rWAR baseball, before filing for free agency at the end of last season.  Carpenter was involved in the John Farrell trade, and has already been DFA'ed by the Red Sox.
    • Cordero signed with the Jays before the 2011 season, and was given entirely too much leash, accruing -0.7 WAR and a staggeringly terrible -1.66 WPA over 34.1 innings.
    • Wojciechowski was drafted 1-41 by the Jays in the 2010 draft as a compensation pick for the loss of Rod Barajas.
      • Barajas had a .275 OBP over parts of two seasons, which exposes the flaws of the compensation system.  Either way, 2.1 rWAR.
    • Perez was signed as an international free agent in 2007.
    • Rollins was drafted by the Jays in the 26th round of the 2011 draft.
    • Musgrove was drafted by the Jays 1-46 in 2011 as compensation for the loss of John Buck, which is kind of ironic.
      • Buck was signed as a free agent before the 2010 season, and was worth 1.5 rWAR in his only season in Toronto, before signing in Miami for 3/$18MM.  He was traded back to the Jays in the Reyes deal, and then flipped in the R.A. Dickey deal.
    • Comer was drafted by the Jays 1-57 in the 2011 draft, as compensation for the loss of Miguel Olivo, who was acquired for cash from Colorado after the 2010 season.
      • Cash was acquired in exchange for the goods and services provided by the Rogers Communications group.
    • Francisco was acquired from Philadelphia in exchange for Frank Gailey.  He got 54 plate appearances with the Jays before being traded.
      • Gailey was drafted in the 23rd round of the 2007 draft, and is still in A+ as far as I can tell.

  • Esmil Rogers: Acquired in exchange for Mike Aviles and Yan Gomes.
    • Aviles was acquired from Boston in exchange for John Farrell and David Carpenter, before being subsequently flipped to Cleveland.
      • Farrell was signed to manage the Jays, and I suppose, technically, that he did so.
      • Carpenter, as mentioned above, was involved in the big 12-player Houston trade.
    • Gomes was drafted by the Jays in the 10th round of the 2009 draft.  He was worth 0.3 WAR over 111 plate appearances for the Jays in 1 season.  He can apparently catch, which is probably the only place his bat will play.
  • Steve Delabar: Acquired from Seattle in exchange for Eric Thames.  He's been worth 0.4 rWAR over 29 innings so far for the Jays.
    • Thames was drafted in the 7th round of the 2008 draft, and was worth -0.9 WAR over the equivalent of a full season.  He's best known for not being Travis Snider.
  • Brad Lincoln: Acquired from Pittsburgh in exchange for Travis Snider.  He's been worth -0.3 WAR over 23 innings since being acquired.
    • Snider was drafted 1-14 by the Jays in 2006, and gave the Jays 1.6 WAR before being dealt.
The real takeaway here is thanks for everything AJ Burnett.

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